1. You really do not need a JR Pass if you just want to travel in West Kansai region.
If you want to go to Kobe, Kyoto, Nara, you really do not need a JR Pass.. It's not always that you will ride on a JR line - except to Universal Studios but it's so cheap you can just pay cash. If you want to go to further outside of Osaka region, then yes, that will make sense..
2. Shopping in Rinku Outlet.
It's cheap. There's "happy hour" like thingy and you can even get like 50% off the outlet price, like how I paid for my Adidas shoe.. it's just one station from Kansai Airport so unless you have a train pass, go on the day of your arrival/departure..
3. There are really cheap food.
Like ¥100 chicken burger from McDonalds. Surprisingly I only found 1 MOS Burger outlet in Universal Studios..
4. And cheap cosmetics.
Buy from Matsumoto Kiyoshi. I bought the Gatsby Moving Rubber for ¥600 or lesser, which after conversion is cheaper than in Malaysia.. Too bad they don't have much Gatsby hair colour selection.. I always only buy red to dye my hair :o
5. Make sure you get on the right subway/metro trains.
There's red-signboard limited express (that stops only at a few major stations), blue or orange signboard express (stops at most stations) and black-signboard local (stops at all stations, and longer stops in each station to allow the other two types of trains to overtake).
You CAN however, get on the limited express train and get off at the nearest station to the one you want to go and then change onto the express or local train - you DO NOT need to take the local train all the way. Just know where to get off.
And some trains terminate halfway. Check where the train terminates (whether halfway or at terminus) before boarding, otherwise you will have to waste time changing trains.
6. Like Australia, you CAN EAT and DRINK on the platform and in trains.
Not in Malaysia.
7. If you have tattoos, be aware that most onsen do not permit entry.
Check before you go. Spa World prohibits entry to people with tattoos. There's staff station at the lockers so unless you have a tattoo on your asshole, they are bound to see it and ask you to leave.
8. Japan is a technological advance country but half the place still do not accept credit card.
Make sure you have enough cash on you. Such as the tourist desk that sells passes in Kansai Airport - only cash!
Some outlets do not require you to sign on the credit card slip.. And they don't verify your card either.. Always check on your credit card statement..
Some restaurants do not accept cards as well.. Ask ahead.. But at least it's better than Australia (most places in Australia do not accept foreign-issued cards as they have mostly done away with signature base, they only accept PIN-based credit cards)..
9. You literally can buy anything from vending machines.
They would have vending machines everywhere - parking lots, shops, alleys, sidewalks, toilets - that you can buy from.. And there's also plenty of gaming machines around that has cute soft toys in it..
10. It's hard to find dustbin.
Seriously, tough to find a dustbin even in a market! But when you do, most are segregated according to recyclables.
So that concludes my Japan Adventure! My next trip is Singapore happening on next weekend which is a fully all-expenses paid business trip, staying in Marina Bay Sands and with appointments all through and through!
|Some of my purchases|
|Rapit:a Train bound for Kansai Airport|
|Osaka city & Kansai Airport|
|Green tea Haagan-Daaz ice-cream!|